Whenever you come to Lebanon, make sure to add “Traffic” as a pastime on your to-do list. This is an important point that you should take in consideration as it might interfere in your schedule; but let’s not be negative and see the positive side of it. Traffic in Lebanon makes you memorize a complete music album while listening to it in your car for 3 times in a row, it puts you in a “available” status while chatting, it is the best time to open a conversation with someone in the car or on the phone.
The time drivers spend on the road is added to the daily timesheet of a Lebanese; in instance, you work for 9 hours, sleep 6 hours, drive in traffic for 3 hours and pass the remaining 6 hours bitching about traffic and work.
Saying so, let’s avoid anymore bitching and try to focus on solutions for this problem that has been annoying Lebanese people for more than four decades.
The first solution is to rely on proper and well organized public transportation, and more specifically the bus. This can start in the Beirut area before expanding it to other regions; my excuses in advance to Mme Achrafieh or Mr.Badaro who will have to walk or take the bus in order to enjoy their coffee or cigar.
The second solution will come in the form of an organized schedule for each profession in Lebanon. In instance, school should be from 8:00 till 15:00, bankers from 8:30 till 15:30, food distribution and trucks at night, etc..This is a very complicated option but can lead to miracles if it was implemented in the right way.
The third solution is a “ferry bus” that will be used all along the Lebanese coast and will have stops in every major city.